Category Archives: Finance/Banking

UTRGV Students Take Trading Competition

Christopher Martinez, Michael Villarreal and Jose Naveja with faculty advisor Bruno Arthur (UTRGV Photo)

A group of undergraduate business students from The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley recently beat out more than 500 teams from 37 countries to capture their first ever championship win in the 15th annual CME Group Trading Challenge. Christopher Martinez of McAllen, Michael Villarreal of Rio Grande City and Jose Naveja of Progreso finished the competition with a total of $706,585. They beat out second-place competitor Kansas State University, who…

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Getting Ready to Pay the Taxman

CPA Javier Alacron discusses tax reform with small business owners.

Some elements of the new tax reform package that was signed into law late last year and took effect in 2018 are straightforward and simple to understand. Others are detailed and complex. And some areas are cloudy since the regulations haven’t been written yet. The simplest part of the package to understand is the lowering of tax rates in the seven tax brackets for individuals. “Whatever bracket you are in,…

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Lone Star Breaks Ground on New Banking Center

Lone Star National Bank officials and community leaders turn shovels of dirt at the groundbreaking ceremony for the bank’s second Edinburg location. (VBR)

In front of the building already under construction, Lone Star National Bank hosted a groundbreaking ceremony Feb. 7 to celebrate its second Edinburg location. The new branch will be the 34th in a network of banks throughout both the Rio Grande Valley and San Antonio. “Our goal is to continue to grow in the Valley, Lone Star National Bank President and CEO David Deanda said. “We are always there to…

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Small Banking Has Big Rewards

Greater State Bank President and CEO David Salinas in front of the vault.

David Salinas’ first job in banking was to make sure the candy bowls for customers were kept full at First State Bank on the downtown square in his hometown of Edinburg. Building on that modest start, Salinas has lived a full career in banking that includes working for the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency before working for large regional banks like Texas Commerce Bank, International Bank of Commerce…

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Texas Regional Breaks Ground on Corporate HQ

Texas Regional Bank President and CEO Paul Moxley gestures during his remarks at the groundbreaking ceremony for the bank’s new corporate headquarters.

As Rio Grande Valley temperatures plunged with a blast of winter weather, members of the Harlingen business community huddled together under a tent for a groundbreaking ceremony to mark the start of construction of Texas Regional Bank’s corporate headquarters. Just a few days earlier the bank opened its newest Harlingen branch in a temporary building at Stuart Place Road and Expressway 83, right next door to where the new banking…

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IBC Helps Open Another Minitropolis

Brownsville area elementary school launches Cowboyville The IBC Bank Minitropolis program has expanded yet again, allowing more students to see how a community works together for the good of its citizens. Rosita del Castillo Elementary and IBC joined together Oct. 19 to hold a ribbon cutting and launch the school’s edition of Minitropolis, Cowboyville. Through the program, all students hold a variety of real world positions, depending on both individual…

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UTRGV online MBA ranks nationally

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley is sixth in the nation among the 50 most affordable online Master of Business Administration in Financial Planning degrees

Program is sixth for financial planning According to, the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley is sixth in the nation among the 50 most affordable online Master of Business Administration in Financial Planning degrees. The recognition comes in part from multiple start dates throughout the year, thus allowing students to start shortly after acceptance. Another aspect of recognition are program features that save students time and money. The ranking…

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How to Calculate Taxes on IRA Income

calculating taxes on IRAs

Calculations vary with contributions and earnings In last month’s article, I wrote about the mistaken idea some people have that they earn too much to benefit from a Roth IRA.  The Tax Increase Prevention and Reconciliation Act, passed by Congress in 2005, effectively opened up a legal avenue to make contributions to a traditional IRA, and then convert all or part of the funds to a Roth. Let’s dig a…

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Don’t Think You Earn Too Much For A Roth IRA 

When Roth IRAs were created in 1997, they were an exciting new idea. They provided a way to make after-tax contributions that could, under certain conditions, grow entirely free of federal income taxes. Prior to that, traditional IRAs worked basically the other way around — you could make deductible contributions, but distributions would be fully taxable. The law also allowed taxpayers to “convert” traditional IRAs to Roth IRAs by paying…

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